By Alison Osius April 21st, Chris Sharma on the set of the Point Break reimaging. He is a climbing double for Johnny Utah.
Are the 'Fast and Furious' Movies on Netflix? I was about 8 years old when I first saw this very violent and extremely sexually explicit film. For some strange reason, I have become a fairly well-adjusted adult woman and I was not at all traumatized by seeing multiple men shot in the head, in the gut and in the back.
Welcome to Millennial Review, where we task millennials to review pop culture pillars from yesteryear. We begin with an introduction from a previous generation for whom this piece of culture was particularly meaningful. Surfing, skydiving, bank robberies, shootouts, car chases, beach football, foot pursuits, and fights galore. You guys, Point Break is on Sundance channel.
Released in' Point Break ' starred Keanu Reeves as Johnny Utah, an FBI agent who infiltrates a crew of surfing bank robbers in an attempt to bust them, but unwittingly bonds with their leader, Bodhi Patrick Swayze. The classic action flick was directed by Kathryn Bigelowway back before she directed 'The Hurt Locker' which earned her an Oscar for Best Director, making her the first woman to win that award and 'Zero Dark Thirty. You can also see him in the recent release '47 Ronin' and the upcoming film 'John Wick.
The title refers to the surfing term point break. The film was a box office success upon its release, and it has since gathered a cult following. Johnny and his partner Angelo Pappas, Gary Busey are assigned to investigate a string of bank robberies in the Los Angeles area committed by a gang nicknamed the "Ex-Presidents", due to their use of masks of former presidents during said robberies.
Because they spend so much time in the water and appear to be sun kissed and clean, surfers have a hard time being taken seriously as an outlaw subculture. Bikers, for instance, with their grease and body odors, are much more daunting in the role of menacing criminal, at least they were until tough-guy wave rider Patrick Swayze marauded and plundered his way through the salt-water noir plot of Point Break An action-adventure, crime thriller that provides the requisite fights and chases and also manages to toss in a pinch of beachfront special effects, Point Break is a swell worth riding.
Kathryn Bigelow, true to form, sets out her store from the opening sequence of Point Break. The title drifts across a shot of a gently rippling ocean surface before we move into crystal slo-mo shots of a lone surfer riding the Pacific waves to Mark Isham's portentous score. Intercut is Keanu Reeves in a rain-drenched T-shirt rolling around on an FBI shooting range, blowing the crap out of pop-up targets with a handgun that sounds like an anti-tank cannon in a portaloo while our anonymous surfer performs graceful curls and dives as water washes across the screen.
I remember being curious and confused that this still was apparently from a high-adrenaline action film, and being shocked to read that Patrick Swayze was the Bad Guy. Why did they look like friends? In a fairly straightforward way, I can trace my deepening love and appreciation for cinema directly from one viewing of Point Break to another. I would have first caught it, likely multiple times, initially piecemeal, on network television in junior and senior high, swept up in the narrative and literally sensational set-pieces; next, on DVD in college, enamored with its poetry and moral ambiguity; and, finally, during multiple viewings between then and now, on DVD and Blu-ray, astonished anew at the total extraordinary package.